A PUB has shown its support for the local community by sponsoring the passenger ferry that links Portsmouth to Hayling Island.
The sponsorship has seen the Hayling Ferry undergo a week-long refurbishment and it was relaunched last Sunday with a new look – sporting the Portsmouth colours of blue and white.
The Ferry Boat Inn, owned by Stonegate Pub Company, stepped in to sponsor the work, choosing the new colours. The pub, in Ferry Road on Hayling Island, hosted a celebration in honour of ferry’s relaunch, inviting customers to enjoy a buffet, before they caught the first glimpses of the ferry when skipper Colin Hill took her by the pub.
The pub and the ferry’s history have been entwined since the early 1950s, when - what was then known as The Inn - became the Ferry Boat Inn, after the boat. Since then the relationship has continued, with Colin and pub manager Edwina West frequently teaming up for special occasions and events.
‘The ferry looks fantastic!’ said Edwina. ‘She really is a part of both the community and the charm of Hayling Island. It’s wonderful to see her in the true Portsmouth colours as well.
‘It’s been fascinating learning about the history of the pub and the ferry – I didn’t realise we werenamed after the boat. We also discovered the song ‘Down by the Ferry Boat’ by the Beverley Sisters was sung about our ‘Pride of Hayling’ ferry as well.
‘We saw a lot of our customers for the launch and everyone enjoyed the spread we put on for the occasion - as we welcomed our old friend back to the water in style.’